New landing card by mid-May
BEFORE THE end of May the Passport Immigration and Citizenship Agency (PICA) is expected to introduce a new immigration/customs landing card to reduce the likelihood of errors while filling out the document, and to speed up the processing of persons arriving into the island.
PICA said the objective of the changes is to standardise the processing of passengers at the island's airports, in accordance with international best practices. The revised card was done in consultation with players in the tourism sector and health officials.
The agency has indicated, in an email response, that discussion was now taking place with Jamaica Customs, and the new card should be in place by mid-May.
Eliminates departure record
Outlining the benefits of the new card, PICA said it will remove the requirement for one's marital status and also eliminate the departure record.
It said item 21 of the current form, which speaks to the purpose of the visit, reflects nine options. However, item 10 of the revised form will capture that information and will now reflect only six options. At the same time, item 22, which addresses accommodation on the current form has been streamlined with the area for the intended address in Jamaica captured at item seven.
In his contribution to the Sectoral Debate in Parliament, last week, National Security Minister Peter Bunting also pointed out that the introduction of the new card would reduce the number of fields to be completed from 27 to 15, and would now require one signature instead of two.
Bunting also said the implementation of automated kiosks for the facilitation of arriving passengers was completed in the previous financial year.
The 10 kiosks installed at the Sangster International Airport process 13 per cent of arriving passengers.